April 02, 2015

Congratulations to Metro and SCAG (Southern California Association of Governments) on receiving a National Planning Excellence Award for a Best Practice for First Last Mile Strategic Plan & Planning Guidelines. The Excellence Award is the highest honor within APA’s National Planning Awards program, which has been recognizing innovative planning for over 50 years.

Meléndrez is proud to have been part of the team on this innovative and forward thinking plan. Today, broad-based support for the plan has led to the Metro Board calling for the development of pilot projects along existing lines and the prioritization of first last mile projects in Metro’s biennial grant programs. SCAG is earmarking funding for pilot projects. SCAG, Metro, and other local jurisdictions are requiring First Last Mile Plan consistency in TOD planning projects they support or fund.

The vast majority of transit users in Los Angeles walk or roll themselves to stations and bus stops to complete multi-modal connections, however the facilities provided for these people are often subpar, with the majority of Los Angeles’ street space dedicated to the automobile. The plan provides a framework and is a toolbox for localities to make a case, seek funding, build programs, initiate dialogues and rally support around first last mile issues. The strategies outlined within the Plan respond to Metro’s core challenge—improving the reach of transit throughout the county.

“The Pathway” is an innovative model within the Plan the Pathway” which is comprised of rationally planned and intelligently designed active transportation networks within station areas. As part of the Pathway, innovative concepts are put forth, such as a “Rolling Lane” – a shared protected lane in the roadway for bikes, skateboarders, electric mobility scooters, and other rolled mobility devices to address their proliferation over the recent years and an “Green Zone”—a dedicated area immediately adjacent to the transit station that allows priority waiting, parking, and drop-off for electric, shared ride, and other alternative vehicles. The Plan provides regional authorities a strategy that supports regional mobility, community health, and clean air policies, building off the Southern California Regional Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy.

The Plan’s heavy use of graphics and info-graphics, along with its easy-to-use Toolkit, outlining recommended first last improvements, has allowed Metro and SCAG to build a comprehensible framework for regional transportation agencies, and ultimately, transit users. 


Project Team

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro)

Diego Cardoso, Metro

Shahrzad Amiri, Metro

Neha Chawla, Metro

Steven Mateer, Metro

Alexandra Oster, Metro


Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG)

Sarah Jepson, SCAG

Alan Thompson, SCAG

Matt Gleason, SCAG


First Last Mile Technical Advisory Committee (Project TAC)

Rye Baerg, Safe Routes to School

Ellen Blackman, Accessibility Advisory Committee

Robert Boardman, City of Redondo Beach

Maddie Brozen, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs

Eric Bruins, Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition

Connie Chung, County of Los Angeles

Allan Crawford, City of Long Beach

Troy Evangelho, County of Los Angeles

Michelle Glickert, City of Santa Monica

Jay Kim, City of Los Angeles

Alexis Lantz, LA County Department of Public Health

Brian Ludicke, City of Lancaster

Ryan Lehman, Living Streets LA

Jessica Meaney, Safe Routes to School

Deborah Murphy, LA Walks

Mark Nitti, Metrolink

Hilary Norton, Fixing Angelenos Stuck in Traffic (FAST)

Ghloria Ohland, Move LA

Simon Pastucha, Los Angeles Department of City Planning

Katherine Sims, SCRRA

Walker Wells, Global Green

Cory Wilkerson, City of Burbank

Mark Yamerone, City of Pasadena

Lori Abrishami, Metro

Stewart Chesler, Metro

Maggie Derk, Metro

Adela Felix, Metro

Lynne Goldsmith, Metro

Diana Gonzalez, Metro

Rufina Juarez, Metro

Todd Mitsuhata, Metro

Tham Nguyen, Metro

Desiree Portillo-Rabinov, Metro

Yvonne Price, Metro

Janna Smith, Metro

Cory Zelmer, Metro


APA Award Announcement 

Full Plan PDF